Two O3b Satellites Taken Out of Service as a Precaution

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Two of the four first-launch satellites of startup broadband service provider O3b Networks have been shut down to preserve their capacity in the event the other two fail, industry officials said.
The decision to switch off the two satellites will increase the likelihood that O3b, which now has eight satellites in orbit, will be able to maintain the necessary six spacecraft in operation while waiting for its next four satellites to launch in early 2015, officials said. “This was a conscious decision to mitigate risk. The constellation works fine with six satellites. Because there is no way of saying when the problem on the first four will cause complete power loss, it’s prudent to take two of them out of service. They can be switched back on at any time.”

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